WARNING: Supplements are just that — supplements.
When your nutrition is dialed in and your workouts are on point, supplements can be great additions to your routine to maximize performance. That said, they should NOT replace excellent eating habits and calorie-crushing workouts.
TD’s Top 10 Essential Supplements
Here are my Top 10 Essential Supplements to complement your fitness and nutrition, and get you closer to the results you dream of.
#1. Whey Protein:
Build muscle and recover quickly with fast-digesting whey protein. A post-workout whey protein shake is a must for muscle building and recovery. Another benefit of whey protein? It curbs sugar cravings. Slam a shake when your sweet tooth hits and watch what happens.
Between food and supplements, I suggest a total protein intake of ~1 gram per pound of bodyweight daily. My personal pick is Ascent Protein’s Native Whey as it’s ultra-clean. The fewer ingredients on the label, the better.
#2: Amino Acids:
Aminos make a great muscle-sparing cocktail and extra energy “drink” throughout the day. Sip an amino acid-laden beverage throughout the day to give your muscles, body, and mind a little extra fuel. Or, if you’re a fasted cardio fan, sip it before and during your workout. Bonus points for the fact that most amino supplements taste great! Pick a product with zero sugar and enjoy!
#3: Fish Oils:
Fish oils battle inflammation and contain fatty acids your body needs to operate at its best. They’re a must for combatting joint pain and soreness when you’re hitting the iron hard, and most of us could use more of the healthy fats they provide in our diets. Long story short, you can’t go wrong with fish oils.
A key ingredient for muscle repair and recovery, this amino acid is a non-negotiable for peak performance. The faster you recover, the sooner you can get back in the gym feeling your best. Our best workouts occur when we’re feeling great, after all.
Focus, endurance, muscle building, and recovery are at an all-time high when you take Beta-Alanine pre-workout. Already in many products, look for the CarnoSyn® logo to ensure you’re ingesting top-notch stuff. I find Beta-Alanine does a great job masking fatigue, which gets me dialed-in for my workouts and keeps me going strong as exhaustion hits.
Gut health is no joke. It impacts your entire body (and mind). Promote a healthy digestive tract by taking probiotics daily via supplementation or by ingesting them through healthy food sources like greek yogurt. This is the kind of supplement that keeps your body functioning well, despite the chaos of the outside world.
#7: Apple Cider Vinegar:
Improve your heart health with a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar daily. I down mine in the morning, but anytime will do. Does it burn a bit? Sure. Does it help your heart? You better believe it!
You gotta have a strong foundation when supplementing and a multivitamin ensures you’re getting the bare minimum of the nutrients you need. This doesn’t give you a pass to eat crap, but it does make up for anything lacking in your diet. Better safe than sorry!
I experimented with this during NBC STRONG, and I’ve stuck with Prüvit’s Keto-OS supplement since. The goal here is to hit ketosis so your body is burning fat for fuel. Keep in mind: The keto diet requires a high-fat, low-carb intake. This product is complementary to those who are following keto principles.
One of the best pre-workout supplements out there is good ol’ caffeine. A staple of many supplements, a little caffeine boost before the weights is great for extra energy and to mask fatigue. If you’re caffeine sensitive like me, have it before your morning workouts.
There you have it, my friends. Keep working out hard, continue to practice sound nutrition habits, and pick a few of the essential supplements on this list that make the MOST sense for YOU!